Welcome to Marsha’s Mixtape

Hey there,

shediditonhercomputer

my name is Marsha and I’m a producer and songwriter from Cologne Germany. I started to produce music in January 2020, mainly because I wanted to learn something new while I was on sick leave recovering from a MS flare. I’m not quite back to my old physical abilities yet, and I’m not sure if I ever will be, but believe I’ve never been happier than at this point in my life. Making music on my computer is literally my dream come true for me. Thank you for being part of my journey!

My kinda love…

Is music. 

I tried figuring stuff out job wise all my adult life. Became a techie person only because I could listen to music all the time. I even became a writer soI could listen to music while on the job. Now, as I have the luxury of being able to take a break from all of that, I learned a lot about music and music production.  I’m obsessed with YouTube tutorials on beat making, and the beat making community is really open to knowledge sharing, so  there are always producer Q& A’s in the feed too. 

Here’s Kenny Beats, and if you like hip hop music, you’ve most certainly heard his signature tag ‚Woah Kenny!‘ In a dozen songs. 

One of my favs of his is this one here:

Watch out for the incredible break in which he changes the melody and the drum pattern. The song is on my ‘Do your work grl‘ playlist, my go-to playlist whenever I need inspiration. 

Anyway, today I needed to hear what Kenny had to say. 

It’s great to hear people who made it say that having this passion can be enough to get you started. Now, I’m slowly getting better at producing, but I haven’t put any new stuff on my Soundcloud. Mainly because I’m mostly creating loops and then trying to arrange them into full songs, which is really difficult without cool vocals, so I might have to start writing lyrics again. I’ll get some inspiration first though – I mean it’s Sunday, one of the best day to listen to music, like everyday…

Music is my first love.

Our bond is going on longer than since I came to life in this body, so it’s probably the most natural thing for us to get involved. We had a playful relationship over the largest part of my childhood. In my early adult lifetime, I became more interested and developed a more eclectic taste. 

But it started to become more serious a few years ago when Matze and I started the podcast. Matze didn’t own a laptop and since I was the techier person anyway I became the producer, and learned the basic techniques for podcast production on Garageband. It was a lot of trial and error, learning by doing and just seeing what works and what doesn’t. I had brought Logic Pro X beforehand (shortly after the diagnosis tbp) because I always thought that because I love music so much it’d be super easy to make great songs myself. Turns out I was wrong. And after watching a few tutorials I quietly gave up somewhat frustrated. 

On the podcast, we played our favorite songs related to a certain motto we’d chose at the end of the previous episode. Matze as a long-time DJ was so knowledgeable and our discussions on music as listeners and DJs taught me a lot about music in general.

When Matze picked the motto “legendary producers” I remembered my first production attempts Logic. And they weren’t very good, so these producers could do something really well that I couldn’t but really really wanted to do well too. Through our sessions I become kinda obsessed with learning who’d actually help make the song that I loved. In most hip hop tracks the producers bring in their tags, so I’d learn to differentiate the tags and started following the producers on Instagram.

Still I didn’t go back to Logic until I met Ömer who used to be a rapper. We talked about beat making and got all excited then sat behind my DAW and my MIDI keyboard without knowing what to do next. I promised to make a beat for him, once I figure out how to use Logic. And what can I say? Sh*t is complex and I’m doing my best at leaning how to produce cool things every day. Let’s see where it goes. 

So here’s where I’m currently at. 

XoXo

Listen.

My brothers and sisters have been telling the world about what’s going wrong in America for roughly 400 years. They told us about racism, inequality, about police brutality, violence, about what it’s like to be a black person in the US. Maybe we should listen to their words again because quite frankly sh*t is real and hip hop music allows everyone in the world to have the opportunity to effing listen and give respect to these mostly autobiographical pieces of art. Kinda like you would appreciate a painting of a fruit basket hanging in the museum made by an old white man. Change is happening now✌🏾

https://music.apple.com/de/playlist/time-to-listen-blm/pl.u-jV898zgtb8y9jy

IG Live Got Me

I became an IG live fan in the beginning of this cv situation watching Quest Love play live gigs on there.

Every morning I’d just lay in bed and listen to the music he played and the stories he told about the artists. This guy knows music like no other. I mean this guy is a legend playing the greatest music from Prince to JDilla cutting perfectly every night, or early morning in our time zone. Luckily, getting a lot of sleep was not my main priority back in March.

One morning I discovered the DJ D-Nice. That guy had like between 7.000 and 20.000 people watching his live gig. Every night! This guy plays awe inspiring live dj sets from his LA home and everyone can watch for free! I’ve never before seen a dj that can just effortlessly mix soul classics with flower power vibes and lofi and modern hip hop. In those moments you just gotta love the internet.

In another moment you just scroll through the Lives and see two of your favorite rappers having a somewhat philosophical conversation about our human goal of improvement, progress and transformation.

In moments like these I kinda realize that musicians are actually people like you and me with all the individual little problems common people have. We fans, we put the artists on a pedestal because we tend to think that we know them only because we’re able to sing or rap every song from their repertoire. We know the songs with their respective numbers from the album, can even imitate the voices in the skits and we buy clothes to dress just like they do. But apart from being able to individually feel the song we have no idea how much effort, struggle, tears and most of all love goes with creating those pieces of art. I’ve only recently understood how much it takes to create music so that my respect for everyone I’ve ever listened to grew just immeasurably.

I mean Royce dropped one of the dopest albums of 2020 in February.

Lupe has dropped some of the most legendary songs ever. Like this one with Queen Jill who Verzuz battled Queen Erykah.

I dunno if it’s just me but this day and age is kinda cool for music, for fans all around the globe. Assuming music has the power to heal then all the mentioned people and all of the other musicians worldwide should take some credit too, for helping us to cope and get out of this situation. I mean check out the fans who competed in Masego’s veg out challenge. These guys and girls made awesome contributions and Masego shared it with his 566k followers. Sometimes you just gotta love the internet, right?!

Gone with music

We are on the way to my grandma’s house and I’m sitting in my children’s car seat looking out of the window admiring the trees flying by, when her voice starts singing ‘hey hey hey’ I’m in awe of the sweet sounds my ears are picking up. My dad turns the radio up a notch, his head is bobbing up and down while his right hand snaps from time to time. She continues singing. ‘You’re the book that I have open and now I’ve got to know much more’ I don’t understand what the song is about. Is it happy, hopeful, sad? ‘hey hey hey’ Wow! I just love her voice, it fits perfectly with the melody. This must be the most beautiful sounds my ears have ever heard. I drift off, too unconcerned with meaning, metaphors or layers. All I know is that I’m really feeling this song.

I wonder if my sister is crying too, but I can’t open my eyes. On the radio the news are on next and I’m slowly realizing where I am again. I look up and see my sister staring at her Gameboy, her thumbs are busy punching the little buttons. In the front our dad is cussing, because we’re late, our mom is trying to comfort him. It feels as if I had been gone somewhere else while I listened to the song. I scratch my head. What a strange experience.

Whenever sad…

… just get yourself together and make a playlist.

It was the death day of Prince a few days ago. So I listened to Prince. And cried.

Then while still crying I listen to Bill Withers.

I’m still kinda sensitive, but at least I stop crying and make a playlist with the greatest love songs of all time. This helps only temporary, because the songs on that playlist are so beautiful that they make me cry. I stop listening to that playlist and listen to my momentary go-to-playlist called “All This” instead. This song starts playing.

I get all emotional. I listen to the original by Fleetwood Mack. Stevie Nicks has one of the most beautiful voices I’ve ever heard. I cry.

Wouldn’t call my listening behavior a vicious circle, but something about it is maybe too emotional. Maybe that’s because of my life as single. Maybe not. I have no idea – All I know is that today listening to this playlist called “Damals” makes me very happy.

April 20th 2020

Gotta love the music more than ever. I’m still new to this beat making stuff, so when people start criticizing I always tell myself that you gotta start somewhere.

For me that getting in the zone starts with listening to music, enjoying it, feeling the love and spreading it and giving it back. Usually that part involves going to concerts, but since that’s not possible at the moment I thought I’d try it on social. It’s nice. Think I’ll do that more often.

Meanwhile the world’s busy talking about a crisis.

All I know is that when I hear his voice I’m in my own little pink bubble floating happily around at a far away beach 💕